Nursery equipment: Safety checklists

From the beginning of a child's life, products, such as cribs, high chairs and other equipment intended for a child must be selected with safety in mind. Parents and caretakers of babies and young children need to be aware of the many potential hazards in their environment - hazards occurring through misuse of products or those involved with products that have not been well designed for use by children.

This checklist is a safety guide to help you when buying new or secondhand nursery equipment. It also can be used when checking over nursery equipment now in use in your home or in other facilities that care for infants and young children.

Ask yourself: Does the equipment have the safety features in this checklist? If not, can missing or unsafe parts be easily replaced with the proper parts? Can breaks or cracks be repaired to give more safety? Can I fix the older equipment without creating a "new" hazard?

If most of your answers are "NO," the equipment is beyond help and should be discarded. If the equipment can be repaired, do the repairs before you allow any child to use it.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission's concern is that the children in your care have a safe environment in which to grow.



    YES NO
1. Carrier has restraining strap to secure child. ___ ___
2. Leg openings are small enough to prevent child from slipping out. ___ ___
3. Leg openings are large enough to prevent chafing. ___ ___
4. Frames have no pinch points in the folding mechanism. ___ ___
5. Carrier has padded covering over metal frame near baby's face. ___ ___

THE COMMISSION RECOMMENDS: Do not use until baby is 4 or 5 months old. By then baby's neck is able to withstand jolts and not sustain an injury.

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